A second NDP cabinet minister has suffered a death in their immediate family.
Carolyn Estabrooks, 60, wife of Transportation and Energy Minister Bill Estabrooks, died unexpectedly Friday morning.
Halifax RCMP and paramedics were called to the family’s Timberlea home at 11:20 a.m. but were not able to revive her. The cause of death is not yet conclusively known, but it is possible it was a heart attack.
NDP caucus colleagues Frank Corbett and Dave Wilson were at the Estabrooks house within hours to comfort their friend.
“The folks I’ve spoken to are rallying around Bill,” said Shawn Fuller, NDP director of communications.
“Bill has been a longstanding and extremely well-liked member of our caucus. People are just devastated for him.”
No decision has been made on whether someone will take over Estabrooks’ cabinet duties. The cabinet is already shorthanded because Service Nova Scotia Minister Ramona Jennex is mourning the loss of her son.
Fraser Williams, 21, was critically injured in a car accident in New Brunswick just one day after his mother was sworn in as a cabinet minister. Frank Corbett is handling her portfolio until she returns.
The NDP will determine what to do with Estabrooks’ portfolio early this week, but so far they do not expect to have to bring in someone from outside of cabinet.